This 30-Day Plank Challenge Is the Switch-Up Your Fitness Routine Needs

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Planks are a quintessential bodyweight exercise you can do any time, anywhere. They’re a fantastic exercise to keep in your fitness toolbelt because they can help strengthen so many crucial areas of your body. That’s why PS created a 30-day plank challenge you can do at home.

The goal of this plank challenge is to target multiple parts of your core (obliques, abdominals, back, glutes), along with a bit of shoulder engagement. Here’s how it works: Each week, you’ll repeat the same seven types of planks (with some optional modifications to make the moves more challenging) so you can feel your progress over the month. The 30 days finishes with two days of a bonus plank challenge designed to test your strength.

It’s important to note that everyone is different, and may be starting this challenge from various fitness levels. As such, I’m including a time range to hold each plank, rather than a fixed amount of time — you should hold for as long as possible until you fatigue and form begins to waver. Each week, try to hold it for a bit longer than the week before.

But respect your body’s needs. Add in days of complete rest if you need or want the extra recovery. And always check with your doctor or trainer before starting a totally new-to-you fitness routine, to get personalized advice and modifications.

30-Day Plank Challenge: How to Do the Moves

Standard Plank

  • Start in a high plank position.
  • Lower your right elbow to the floor directly below your shoulders, then do the same with your left, coming into a forearm plank.
  • Place your right hand on the mat, and straighten your right elbow. Do the same on the left to return to a high plank.
  • Throughout the movement, engage your core to maintain stability. (Note: If you’re having trouble keeping your hips in place, try bringing your feet a bit wider apart.)

POPSUGAR 30-Day Plank Challenge

Kristine Thomason is a lifestyle writer and editor based in Southern California. Previously, she was the health and fitness director at Mindbodygreen and the fitness and wellness editor at Women’s Health. Kristine’s work has also appeared in POPSUGAR, Travel + Leisure, Men’s Health, Health, and Refinery29, among others.

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